Service day update

Hello Families,

First of all, thank you all for attending the middle school graduation! I was so proud of all of our middle school performers. They all worked very hard, both in class and at home, to create something that truly represented the artist within. What a lovely celebration.

Today the 6th and 7th graders spent the morning doing some service up at the PEAS farm. They weeded like mad, boosted by a healthy advisory competition to see who could make the largest weed pile. We then splashed around in Rattlesnake Creek and enjoyed a picnic lunch. Back at school the 6th graders prepared a s’mores snack in their way cool solar ovens and we enjoyed some down time with books and art projects.

Don’t forget that the final day of school is this Wednesday, June 8th. The kiddos will complete the school year at 11:30. As always, thank you for all you do to support our middle school program each and every day. It has been a vibrant and lively year! We wish everyone wonderfully relaxing summer and look forward to reconnecting in the fall.

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End of Year Performance and Beyond

Hello wonderful middle school parents, the end of the year is upon us. Today we finished our final rehearsal at MIS, and tomorrow we’re off to the theatre for a full day of dress rehearsals with lights and everything. Students will bring snacks, maybe a book and a great attitude with them to the theatre. As you may know we are walking over to the University Theatre in the morning and will spend the whole day there. Your budding young learners are beaming with excitement, and cannot wait to share their talents with you before we send the next group of 8th graders into the world to be the change they want to see. For those 8th grade parents, it takes a village and we middle school teacher couldn’t be more thrilled you included us in your village, we will miss seeing their bright shining faces gracing our halls each day.

– Christian BakerIMG_0648 IMG_0650 IMG_0652 IMG_0654

 

Revised - Don’t forget that next Friday, June 3rd, is the end of the year program/8th grade graduation.  This fantastic event will feature all of our students!  The show begins promptly at 3:30 in the UM Recital  Hall on the UM campus.  A few things to remember:

  • K-8 students will be walking the University from MIS that morning.  We will spend the whole day on the UM campus.  Please be sure they have a hearty lunch that is easy to transport and comfy walking shoes.  There will be NO PIZZA that day.  We will be providing a pizza snack at 3:00 before the show.  If your child has an allergy and cannot eat pizza, please be sure that they have a snack packed for the afternoon.
  • There will be no after care on Friday, June 3rd.
  • Students should wear MIS tee shirts or brightly colored tee shirts without any text and dark colored pants.  8th graders need to wear their semi-formal graduation wear.

We are so excited about this event and can’t wait to see everyone there!

Middle School update, May 26, 2016

The school year is winding down and Middle School Science is going out with a bang! …and a buzz …and a splash…

6th grade scientists finished off the year with a unit on Energy.  We explored the kinetic and potential energy demonstrated in playground equipment.   The kids got super creative using conductive and insulating playdoughs to create “squishy circuits” that lit up LEDs, made motors whir and buzzers buzz!  We even designed and engineered solar ovens to apply what we’ve learned about converting radiant energy to thermal energy.  We’ll be testing the ovens next week – be sure to ask your 6th grader how much heat they were able to trap!

7th and 8th graders spent several classes of their Water unit at the river.  We visited the confluence of the Clark Fork River and Rock Creek, wrote letters to the editor of Missoulian, and even wrote a blog for Clark Fork Coalition.  Read the blog here: http://clarkfork.org/thats-bull/   Our young ecologists monitored both the chemical and biological water quality factors of Rattlesnake Creek, sending their data and analyses to the Watershed Education Network as a part of an important ongoing citizen science project.  7th graders have planned a Water Carnival for the K-1 classes next week – be sure to ask your 7th grader about the station he/she has planned.  And the 8th graders worked so hard this week to polish up their documentary short films!  We’ll be screening these films next week in class.  Why not ask to get a sneak preview of your 8th grader’s creative work?

Don’t forget that next Friday, June 3rd, is the end of the year program/8th grade graduation.  This fantastic event will feature all of our students!  The show begins promptly at 3:30 in the UM Recital  Hall on the UM campus.  A few things to remember:

  • K-8 students will be walking the University from MIS that morning.  We will spend the whole day on the UM campus.  Please be sure they have a hearty lunch that is easy to transport and comfy walking shoes.  There will be NO PIZZA that day.  We will be providing a pizza snack at 3:00 before the show.  If your child has an allergy and cannot eat pizza, please be sure that they have a snack packed for the afternoon.
  • There will be no after care on Friday, June 3rd.
  • Students should wear MIS tee shirts or brightly colored tee shirts without any text and dark colored pants.  8th graders need to wear their semi-formal graduation wear.

We are so excited about this event and can’t wait to see everyone there!

Have a wonderful and safe Memorial Day Weekend!

Jen and the MS Team

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One of our many “Squishy Circuit” creations

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Exploring series circuits

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Designing (and redesigning!) our solar ovens

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Exploring how to wire a solar panel to produce more voltage

Extended Trip Presentations in Spanish

How rewarding it is to see our IB curriculum in action! This year, the middle school classes brought back to the primary grades what they had learned in their trips to Glacier National Park and Mexico. The older students planned mini-workshops to deliver topics that were science related and that their younger peers connected them to their current of unit in the PYP (Sharing the Planet).  The process started before taking their trips by gathering information from our pre-school  through 5th grader inquirers.  Recently, they visited them again to report on their findings and to extend their learning experiences.  The 8th graders covered plants and animals from Baja California and the 6th and 7th presented on ecosystems and pollution of Glacier National Park.  Please see below pictures and other important information.

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Don’t forget that our end of the year program/8th grade graduation is coming up on June 3rd at the University of Montana music recital hall.  All families, preschool through 8th grade, are the stars of this show!  Please plan to be there.  The show starts promptly at 3:30 so arrive early to get a good seat.  More details about the school day will follow shortly.

MIS needs lots of help to end the year right.  Sign up for these great opportunities!

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR END OF YEAR PROGRAM, LIBRARY, ART & MISC. JOBS! TAKE HOME JOBS AVAILABLE.

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR FIELD DAY ON TUESDAY, JUNE 7th!

 

 

Math 7 and 8 – a few days late…

Wow, somehow it is already May! We are still working hard in 7th and 8th grade math. 7th graders are ending the year studying Geometry. We have worked on a variety of transformations and are gearing up to do a tessellation project later this month. Perhaps the next M.C. Escher is among them!


The 8th grade Algebra students are learning about polynomials for their last major unit while quadratic equations are the final unit being tackled by the Independent Study students. Both groups will come together to cover the Pythagorean Theorem and will then be working on a project to present a proof of the theorem to an adult in their lives who has not given Pythagoras or his Theorem much thought for quite some time.


Late in May, both grades will get to hear from Matt Roscoe, Assistant Professor in Math Education at the University of Montana. He is going to talk to the 8th grade about a new proof of the Pythagorean Theorem and to the 7th graders about the Fundamental Theorem of Arithmetic – something they utilize without necessarily realizing.

Happy last month of school to all!

Glacier Memories

Dear Parents,

We finished another busy week.  Please ClickHere to read about their Glacier Institute trip.

P1130074Next week we are looking forward to seeing you during Parent Teacher Conferences. Please remember that these conferences are student led and your child needs to be present.  If you have not confirmed your child’s conference with his/her advisor, please do it asap.

Other important dates in May

 

  • Monday, May 2-Thursday, May 5th: Student Led Parent Teacher Conferences at MIS
  • Thursday, May 5- Science Field Trip- 7th and 8th grade students
  • Friday, May 6- No school- Teacher Professional Development
  • Saturday, May 21st: Chess Tournament at MIS
  • Monday, May 30-No school-Memorial Day

Warmly,

Karim and the MS team

 

English update, April 1st

Hello! We have had a full few weeks leading up to a much anticipated spring break. The sixth graders finished their unit study on A Long Walk to Water with some wonderful, artistic sessions. We spent a morning painting and writing poetry inspired by the book. The following morning we had MIS auntie Angie Biehl teach the kiddos some basics of west African drumming while I taught another group some basics of African dance. The kids loved exploring the artistic influences from this part of the world. Today Birch’s dad, David Banks came and spoke to the class about his work in Africa. He brought some fascinating artifacts and shared gorgeous photos. A big thanks to David for sharing his expertise.

The seventh graders continue to explore Anne Frank and Farewell to Manzanar. We continue to write in our inspired journals and finally finished the BBC Anne Frank miniseries. We were all moved by this adaptation.

The eighth graders completed reading John Steinbeck’s The Pearl in anticipation of our travels to Mexico. We have also been exploring La Paz street art online and writing poetry inspired by this place.

Today we spent time outside the classroom! We took a hike up to the peace sign, participated in a gratitude circle and then returned to school to do some service work. I was proud of how hard the kiddos worked to clean up the school, both inside and out.

I hope everyone enjoys a wonderful spring break! We will see you soon!

Warmly,
Gillian

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Join us at La Stella Blu (612 S. Higgins) this Friday, April 1st, from 5-8pm and enjoy the artwork by MIS students from various grades!

Science Update 25 March 2016

Congratulations to all of our Middle School scientists! What a delight to see all the kids presenting their Science Fair projects with such competence and pride last week! And I was so proud to take all of our 7th and 8th graders to the Montana State Science Fair this week.  What an exciting day, surrounded by top-notch science students from all around the state.  MIS represented well with an impressive 17(!) gold ribbon winners!

Special congrats go out to:

Avery and Sage:  Grand Award 7th Grade Physical – 1st Place*

Birch:  Grand Award 7th Grade Biological – 3rd Place*

            *These students were also nominated for the Broadcom MASTERS National Competition!

Ellie: Montana Conservation Energy Award, 8th  Grade, 1st Place

Will:  Montana Conservation Energy Award, 8th Grade, 2nd Place

Oliver: Montana Conservation Energy Award, 7th Grade, 3rd Place

Congrats to all of you parents for having such impressive children – thank you for all your support in the Science Fair process.   At this point, we are taking a bit of a breather in Science class with mini-units on the ecology of Glacier NP and Baja Mexico.

From English class:  Next Monday, March 27th at 1:00, the 8th graders will be presenting their “What I know for sure” speeches for the rest of the middle schoolers.  We are calling this our TED X-MIS.  You are more than welcome to sneak away from your busy day to come and watch your child present.

Some important upcoming dates:

March 29th:     Orders due for Original Works art sale

April 1st:          MIS Student Art Display at Stella Blue for First Friday

April 4th-8th:   NO SCHOOL, Spring Break!

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The 2016 Montana State Science Fair

 

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Whitney and Annika explaining pizza dough science to a judge.

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Elijah chatting with a judge about his solar powered oven.

Science Fair, Spring Break and Middle School Trips

Dear Parents,

The middle school is buzzing with excitement. In the immediate future and in the coming months the middle school will rise to meet some new challenges as well as a few familiar ones. Below are pictures from our MIS science fair, which took place in our gymnasium, Friday March 18th. You can also see a full slideshow of the student projects: CLICK HERE.

Today and tomorrow the 7th and 8th grades will continue on to the state science fair at the UM campus. This marks the culmination of hours of work, determination and collaboration for the students. Great job everyone.

Additionally, your middle school students are now choosing their electives for the final elective cycle. We have several great options to choose and we as teachers are really looking forward to another great cycle of electives. You should have already received an email about the new elective options. If you have not and you would like one please contact your child’s advisor.

Finally, Spring Break is almost upon us and we wanted to wish happy and safe travels to all the families going on a spring adventure. And if that’s not enough, the spring middle school trips are right around the corner. Once we arrive back from Spring Break we have one week back at school, then off again to The Glacier Institute for the 6th and 7th graders and La Paz, Mexico and EPI, for the 8th graders.   Hold on tight, the whirlwind of trips and events is just getting started.

 

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8th Grade Spanish

Hi

In 8th grade Spanish we have worked on how the Spanish language evolved throughout the history of Mexico.
In this unit we investigated three important periods in this country’s history: pre-hispanic Mesoamerica, from conquest to independence and the Mexican Revolution. At the end of the unit, the students designed a poster in which they presented the information they investigated. Currently, on A days we have a writing and linguistic conventions workshop. On F days, we have reading comprehension workshops. The information learned in the workshops allows them to apply to their knowledge to the projects presented.
The assessment of their work can be found in thinkwave.  They have worked hard and their growth is increasingly showing as the year progresses.

Best Regards,

Miguel

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